tv The Ed Show MSNBC January 12, 2011 6:00pm-7:00pm EST
a good night for that. the matter before us, isn't what views we're entitled to hold, left, right, center, center right or center left it's in our public debate. the right to pester member of congress, to hold up a poster, to scream if you want to, to broadcast what you believe with reasonable confidence that no one will point and fire a gun at you for doing so. without fear of retribution. we need to get the violence and the talk of violence out of our politics. i have yet to hear any reasonable argument to the contrary. that's "hardball" for now. thanks for being with us. right now it's time for "the ed show" with ed schultz. good evening, americans. and welcome to "the ed show." tonight from new york, these stories are hitting my hot buttons at this hour. just hours from now, president obama will speakate memorial service in tucson, arizona, to try to heal this country. he will also visit the hospital. but even at this important moment in our national history,
sarah palin refuses to own up to her own incendiary rhetoric. instead she's playing the victim and she's on the offensive against the media. she was also invoked a highly charged, an offensive term, to describe her own alleged victimhood. my commentary on that in just a moment as well, as we're going to hear from, folks, in congress, congresswoman jan schakowsky and analyst bob shrum will be here. and a new threat against the democratic lawmaker. the fbi has made an arrest. the threats were against congressman jim mcdermott and they were intended to dplns his vote on tax cuts. it is incredible. the congressman will join us live here tonight. and when you talk about privacy i think we need to change the laws about mental illness and what needs to be reported to authorities. i believe that this tragedy could had been prevented, if we had connected the dots with the professionals in the arena.
now, this is the story that has me fired up tonight. at this hour, president obama is in tucson, arizona. two hours from now, he's scheduled to address the nation at a memorial service for the victims of the shooting rampage. this should be a day to set politics aside and focus on the victims. but it all changed this morning when sarah palin finally broke her silence. palin blasted out a rambling eight-minute video, which did very little to address the victims. she smoechbt of her time attacking the media. >> -- reflecting on what happened. praying for guidance. after this shocking tragedy, i listened at first, puzzled, then with concern, and now with sadness to the irresponsible statements from people attempting top a portion blame for this terrible event. >> palin is sad about
irresponsible statements. you got to be kidding me, folks. she's the queen of irresponsible statements which even now she refuses to own up to. >> it's not a time to retreat. it's a time to reload. >> we're not going to back off on our criticism of the problems over the health care bill and one aspect of it is the death panel. >> our opponent is someone who sees america as imperfect enough to pow around with terrorists. >> instead of showing any leadership or make taking any responsibility for her ugly rhetoric or talking about the real victims, palin used this opportunity this time to play the victim. >> no one should be deterred from speaking up and speaking out in peaceful dissent and we certainly must not be deterred by those who embrace evil and call it good and we will not be stopped from celebrating the
greatness of our country and our foundational freedoms by those who mock its greatness by being intolerant of differing opinion and seeking to muzzle dissent with shrill cries with unimagined insults. >> listen, nobody thinks the shooter was following sarah palin's orders. i've said that all week, but it's a fact. palin put cross hairs on gabby giffords district, that's a fact. it's also a fact that giffords wasn't imagining an insult, which she criticized palin for those cross hairs. palin was flat-out grandstanding with this video today, political grandstanding. today, when there's a memorial service? she doesn't have the character to say that she regrets anything. her game plan all along has been very simple -- no apology, no toning it down, just attack. >> especially within the hours of the tragedy unfolding. journalists and pundits should
not manufacture a blood libel to insig incite the very violence. that is reprehensible. >> well the words blood libel set off a firestorm of controversy. blood libel is a historical myth, a lie that claimed jews kidnapped christian children to use their blood during passover ceremonies. simon grier, the president of the jewish funds for justice said this today. "we are deeply disturbed by fox news commentator sarah palin's decision to characterize as a blood libel. the criticism directed at her following the terrorist attack in tucson. unless someone has been accusing ms. palin of killing christian babies and making matzoh from their blood. her use of the term is totally out of line." well, once again, palin is proving to be nothing more than an unguided missile in the
political arena. many people think that she's used the term "blood libel" as an appeal to an extremist christian conservative base for 2012. 14,000 people are scheduled to attend the memorial service in tucson tonight. president obama is expected to ask americans to come together to honor the hereos and the fallen. sarah palin had to make it about her. i think that is a1 reprehensible. get your cell phones out, folks. i want to know what you think about this issue. tonight's text survey question is, do you think that sarah palin should apologize for her violent rhetoric? text "a" for no. text "b" for no to 622639. we'll bring you the results later in show show. joining me now is illinois congressman jan schakowsky. congresswoman, good to have you on tonight on this issue. this has been a very tough day at the capitol. there's about a great deal of emotion shown by mr. boehner, also nancy pelosi, and all of you in congress because of what has happened.
now, this release by sarah palin today, how would you characterize it. >> well, you can't imagine how out of step it is with the tone that's being set here in the congress right now. people going to the floor, both sides of the aisle, and lamenting the loss of life, praying for the victims and especially for gabby giffords. talking about our staff that also put themselves in danger. there's a sense of oneness that was also reflected in a wonderful emotional service that we had that ended with a prayer, a benediction by david sappersteen, a rabbi and we all held hands and democrats and republicans stood holding hands and then there is sarah palin making it about herself. about feeling defensive and then accusing people of trying to muzzle her and somehow ruining our democracy by doing so.
it was so out of place. such a sour note in the midst of an effort here to really come together. >> what are your thoughts, congresswoman, of her using the term "blood libel"? >> well, certainly as a jew and the jewish community the organized community has spoken out. this is one of the oldest thing -- ways to talk about jews as killing christian children in order to use their blood to make matzoh. >> what do you think that she did did. >> frankly i don't think that she knew what she was saying, most charitable thing that i could say that she has no idea what it really means, but does that mean that we'll get an apology from her? i doubt it. but it was a -- it fell out of her mouth or actually i think that it was a very planned speech that she made but she clearly didn't know that blood libel, it's something that goes back to the 12th century, was
certainly used during world war ii by the hitler regime, to demonize jews. it was -- >> well, let's just say that she knows what it means and maybe she got some help on the speech from somebody who knows exactly what blood libel means. what kind of -- what kind of light does that showed this? >> well, then i guess what she would be saying, once again, is that she's a victim of some kind of a vicious assault. most vicious assaults raising this specter of the holocaust and this kind of prejudice. that would be really a terrible for thing for her to have done. >> congresswoman jan schakowsky, thanks for joining us tonight. i appreciate your time on this program. >> thank you, ed. >> and the president of the united states will be visiting the united medical center in arizona tonight. he is going to do that first. he's going to visit with gabby giffords, the congresswoman from arizona, who is fighting with her life, along with her husband and other victims in the
hospital. joining us now is veteran democratic strategist and analyst, bob shrum, professor new york university. bob, your thoughts on the release of this tapeon this day. >> well, i think she obviously was trying to get political attention. i think to try to make political profit out of this is obscene. and, frankly, i think to invoke the term blood libel, if she knew what it meant, is equally obscene. and if she didn't know what it meant, she should have said to somebody, what is this doing in my text? what's the reference? do i really want to say this? ed, her speech was ahist oe ahi. embracing evil and calling it good. that's exactly what's wrong with the tone of speech in this country and the tone of political debate in this country right now. you can say the other guy is wrong, you can say that they got the facts wrong, they got the policy wrong, but you don't have
to and you shouldn't be saying that they're evil. i have some strong disagreements with a number of people. some very conservative, some of them good friends. i don't call them evil. i just call them wrong but she wants -- >> was this an attempt to save the base? was there some strong messaging here in your opinion? >> well, she's speaking to the, you know, 15%, 20%, 22% of people who are really bitter, really angry, who are the core of her support and who do give her the potential to win the republican nomination for president. but i'd say at the end of today after we listened to the president and after we listened to sarah palin, we'll know why he's president and why she never will be. >> do you think some republicans will question that terminology that she used, blood libel, should they? >> they should. she should apologize for it. they should question it. but i just don't know, because they live in terror of these tea party types. i mean, look, tim pawlenty came out the other day, and said, she
shouldn't have put the cross hairs on gabby's congressional district and in the congressional district of other members, and then he's been backing down day after day, because he's received a lot of blow back from people in the party that he thinks may determine the outcome of the republican primaries. i hope tonight, and i believe tonight, that president obama will rise to the occasion as he does in these really decisive and critical moments and speak the heart of america. >> yeah. jim clyburn, member of congress today, today bill press on his radio show that sarah palin doesn't understand what's going on here and doesn't have the intelligence to understand what's going on here. either we've got a shortage of intelligence with sarah palin or we've got a real dose of arrogance and insensitivity. which is it? >> i don't know. i mean look, during the campaign she was profoundly misinformed. i watched that speech today and i don't think that she wrote it, but she obviously approved it, and she gave it.
but she has, it seems to me, a very clear plan, and that plan is to consolidate the far right base and use that far right base as she runs for president to win the iowa caucuses. she won't win new hampshire but she'll leapfrog to south carolina. win south carolina, and maybe get that republican nomination for president. you know i've said on this show before, ed -- >> yeah. >> -- that i endorse her because i think that she's a sure loser in the general election. i retract that endorsement because i think that it would be a terrible thing for a great political party, either political party, to nominate someone like that for president of the united states. >> bob shrum, great to have you with us tonight. thanks so much. coming up, a south carolina gun dealer is selling, selling, a semiautomatic rifle to honor republican congressman joe wilson. it has the words "you lie" etched on the firearm. i think it's disgusting. president obama speaks to a heartbroken nation in a couple of hours.
we'll ask joan walsh, how the president should handle it all. and a new arrest for threats against congressman jim mcdermott of washington. the congressman will be here later in the show to talk about that and just how will congress get along in the next session? [ male announcer ] from jet engines that have fewer emissions, to new ways to charge electric cars, to renewable sources of clean energy, ecomagination from ge is advanced technology
that's good for both the economy and the environment. ♪ it's technology that makes the world work. [ squawking ] ♪ coming up, well as you can imagine the gun control debate in this country is hotter than ever. so i want to know why a south carolina gun dealer is selling a semiautomatic weapon branded with the slogan "you lie"? what does he really mean? senator frank lautenberg of new jersey is calling for a ban on high-capacity ammunition. this is norma. who knows how important it is to have her medicine in one place. so norma brings all of her prescriptions to walgreens where her pharmacist can watch out for interactions with her over-the-counter medicine. now norma thinks less about her medicine
welcome back to "the ed show" and thanks for watching tonight. i think this is a shocking story. it goes beyond the pale. a south carolina gun dealer has created a new weapon to honor republican congressman joe wilson. remember, wilson? he's the guy who shouted out "you lie" at president obama during the 2009 speech to congress. >> the reforms -- the reforms i'm proposing would not apply to those who are here illegal. >> you lie! >> it's not true. >> well, a gun dealer apparently thought that deserved a commemorative weapon. so they started offering this semiautomatic rifle with the words "you lie" inscribed on it. we should say that that's an old picture of congressman joe wilson holding a different
rifle. he is not affiliated with the "you lie" rifle, but what he said certainly motivated, you know, words have consequences. that picture was taken down after the media got wind of this story yesterday. but i want to know what are these people thinking? this country is in the midst of a conversation about rhetoric and the consequences of words but a semiautomatic weapon branded with "you lie," you, being president obama. i mean what is the intent of the message here? or is that too broad a question? joining me tonight is new jersey senator frank lautenberg who will be introducing legislation that deals with firearms in the high-capacity clips. senator, good to have you with us here tonight. >> nice to be here. >> i appreciate your time. your thoughts on that firearm and what was etched in it? what are we thinking as a country. >> these are provocative statements.
they're intended to light an incendiary path for someone who's particularly unbalanced, unstable, and it does call for vengeance of a type, and it's unacceptable. my god, we're looking now at one of the worst trajdhees we've seen. not in numbers, but in terms of an attack on innocent people. a 9-year-old girl, the congresswoman, the judge, other visitors there, doing nothing but being positive and this guy, this crazed man, comes along and doesn't have enough bullets in his first round. that he's trying to put more bullets in there to kill more people, hurt more people. we've got to stop this stuff. people have to realize, words have significance. >> senator, you want to go back to the old legislation that limits the number of firearms -- or should i say, bullets in a clip is that correct? >> yeah i do. that was on the books for ten
years. >> why do you want to do that? it expired in 2004. >> i wanted to do it because it was deliberately eliminated and the danger it represents is, what these guns are for killing people. designed for law enforcement, for military people. that's what they want to be used for. and why should people who are unstable or angry get something like that to render the kind of mayhem they did in tucson? we shouldn't allow it and i'm not asking gun people to give up their guns. nothing like that. i'm saying, look, let's get behind this thing. let's now be remembering what terrible thing took place here and let's curve the opportunity for people to do this kind of stuff. we just can't take it in our society anymore. >> so you don't want to take the pistol away from americans, you just want to limit the ammunition, you want to limit the amount of clips that someone can have in their possession. >> right. >> or the number of bullets that can be in the clip. do you think that that would
curb gun violence? >> no but i think that it would be a start. to me, ed, when you've got a problem the size that we have with gun violence in our country, with 9,500 murders in a year with additional dozen, thousands of people who commit suicide, have accidents. just take a little piece out of something that can be done easily and quickly and start doing the process that says, curb the gun violence. if you're going to own a gun, own it legitimately but don't carry weapons that you know that are no good in the final analysis for anything but murder. >> your chances of this passing with the republican congress, would you are get 60 votes in the senate on this? >> well, i'm not sure, but you know the revulsion that the american people have now toward seeing what's taken place there, in every state in this country, there were people, tearful, who didn't know the congresswoman giffords or the child who was
murdered -- >> do you think we're feeling different about it right now? >> i think so and i think that we have to carry the message to the public so they let their represents know wh representatives think. >> senator lautenberg, thanks so much. coming up sarah palin couldn't bring herself to apologize for anything today. instead, she talked about old political fights with dueling pistols. i mean, i can't believe this. are we moving forward at all as a country? listening to this? dueling? she's in "the zone" next. [ engine revving ]
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and in "psycho talk" tonight, well the republicans are scrambling to defend their violent rhetoric. and now they're resorting to arguments that are completely absurd. just listen to sarah. >> there are those who claim political rhetoric is to blame for the despicable act of this deranged, apparently, apolitical criminal. and they claim political debate has somehow gotten more heated just recently. but when was it less heated? back in those calm days when political figures literally settled their differences with dueling pistols? >> sarah, if they're dueling with pistols, those aren't calm days, okay? i think you did write this speech. dueling pistols. palin is claiming the tone of today's political debate is so bad because our founding fathers dueled? this is outrageous and it is
ridiculous. and palin's not the only one. it's become, really, a talking point for the righties. governor tim pawlenty used to be of minnesota, discussed our dueling forefathers this morning with the kids over on "fox & friends." >> let's also remember our founders had duels. they called each other all kinds of names. we should have a clash and competition of ideas and policy differences. >> tim, are you dueling anybody lately? and here comes our buddy heidi harris, she brought it up last night on this show. >> when has politics ever been respectful in america? give me a break. we used to have duels, karen, that's how we used to handle things. >> okay. are you convinced that this is a right-wing talking point? yes, you're right, heidi. that is how they used to handle things, but guess what, times have evolved, they've changed for the better. dueling shouldn't even be on the radar screen or even suggested.
oh the republicans love war, don't they? don't you think if, say, the mitster. mitt romney and palin decided to settle their differences with a duel that maybe somebody would try to stop them, you know? maybe law enforcement might hear about it, there's a duel at times square? well, we moved beyond duels in this country. we should move beyond putting targets on congressional districts and telling partisans don't retreat, reload. for republicans to defend their despicable rhetoric by talking about our dueling forefathers is historically bad "psycho talk." it's in their talking points. coming up, speaker boehner will reportedly host a cocktail party for the rnc at the same time president obama will speak at the memorial service in arizona. is that despicable? my panel responds tonight. and president obama is in arizona getting ready for a big
welcome back to "the ed show." the battle ground story tonight, the big debate, well, more threats against a member of congress and a new arrest. congressman jim mcdermott of washington was on this program on december 7th to talk about his intention to vote against president obama's deal with the republicans to extend the bush tax cuts. >> i can't imagine how you could hold unemployed people hostage for two months right through the krgs season and have 2 million people lose the ability to put the turkey on the table. >> yeah. >> and still say -- but i voted for a tax cut for the extremely wealthy in this country who've already gotten more than enough. >> just two days after that interview, congressman mcdermott received horribly angry, violent
voicemail messages from a 32-year-old man who threatened to kill him. his friends and his family, if he voted against the tax cuts. and it wasn't the first time this person had gone after an elected official. seattle newspapers are reporting that last march he made threatening phone calls to a california state assemblyman. back then he was let off with a warning. after apologizing and telling authorities that he'd been high on medical marijuana. this time he's saying that he was drinking when he called the congressman mcdermott's office. he's now been arrested by the fbi, and charged with threatening a federal official. after what this country has gone through, threats, like this, cannot be ignored any longer. by anyone. for more, let's bring in congressman jim mcdermott of washington. congressman, good to have you with us tonight. how shaken were you by this? what kind of a chilling effect
has this had on you? >> well, ed, i've known about this for some time and i really haven't changed my pattern of going out or meeting my constituents or the things that i say. i really believe that, if you believe what you say and you're willing to stand with it, then you continue to do what you think. i think all of us know who take public office that there are risks, that there are people who are distressed by what you may say or what you may do, but that's part of the job and many people don't go into politics because they are unwilling to take that kind of pressure. i think that, it's like saying to a fireman, doan go into a burning building because there's danger in there. when you talk a job, you know what the risks are. and maybe they're minor or minimal but nevertheless, you know they're there, and i think you don't -- you can't back down. if what you believe is what you
believe you say it. >> you know, some folks that maybe congressional members should be more calculated and if you vehemently disagree with something maybe you should do it behind closed doors and maybe not out in the media. it sounds like there's not that calculation being made by you. you feel very strong that your passions have to be displayed to your constituents? >> well, my job as a representative is to accept the trust of 697,000 people to represent them in washington, d.c., in the best fashion that i can do it. and i respect that trust and i trust them. >> yeah. >> and i believe that i have to be in contact with them in order to know what they think,ean even if they disagree with me, and certainly some people do disagree with me -- >> sure. >> -- i have to be open to accept that in order to be a good representative because i have to know what everybody thinks. >> do you think that this will be a more intense environment for elected officials?
over on the senate side the sergeant of arms has told media people that in congress, the threats over the first three months of 2010, they were up 300%. and we know we've got a very angry country right now. the -- obviously the debates are very heated and some of the moves coming up are very controversial from a lawmaking standpoint. is this just the way it's going to be with congressional member? >> well, you know, ed, maybe the only thing that you get out of gray hair is experience but i was at my training back in the 1960s when john kennedy was assassinated. i was in training in psychiatry in chicago and there was a huge, huge cry at that point around how we should prevent this kind of thing from happening, and i think at this point what's most important is that every public official and the people in general step back, take a breath, and think a little more carefully about what they say
and how they say it. i think toning down the rhetoric, bringing down the tension in this society has got to be done from the top but all the people in this society have got to understand. >> congressman, you make a great point, but it seems like there are some lawmakers that refuse to do that and the tea party has been on record as of late after the shooting that they're not going to change their rhetoric. what are your thoughts? >> well, i think that's unfortunate because always in a society, you have people who can't make distinctions between words and actions. >> yeah. >> i'm talking about adults. it's common with children. we know about what violence on television does to children, but it happens in adults who've not matured sufficiently. and you have to be careful what you say because some people take those words as directions to do something. >> congressman jim mcdermott, good to have you here tonight. thanks so much. >> you're welcome. now let's get some rapid
response from our panel on these stories. a south carolina gun dealer has created a special weapon to honor when republican congressman joe wilson shouted out "you lie" to president obama at the state of the union. it has "you lie" branded on a semiautomatic rifle. the memorial service of the victims is set to begin this 90 minutes. what should president obama say to help heal the nation? and while the president is preparing to speak, john boehner will reportedly be hosting a cocktail party for the rnc. but he says he plans to leave before the president's remarks. tasteless, what do you think? let's hear from laura flanders tonight, host of grit tv on free speech tv, and amy holmes, nationally syndicated radio talk show host. laura flanders, what about the actions of john boehner tonight, is this appropriate? >> it may be a little baste cheap shot. this was a benefit clearly organized a long time ago. i mean we know the only i think
that flows more than tears around boehner seems to be cocktails. he's funded the cocktail party but it's an interesting situation that he's in because he stands -- i think shows some courage in this moment. i haven't seen it yet. >> well, they canceled the health care vote, why wouldn't they cancel the cocktail party? >> well, good point, good point. he has a chance here. sort of inherited a party. a party at his back with a lot of shouters. he has an opportunity to rein some of that back in right that the moment. right now he's not showing it. squashing the chances of a gun proposed by his own side. >> amy holmes, what do you think? amy is this inappropriate. >> i don't think so and john boehner in fact he started congress later this week. he led the floor on a house resolution. this was an event that was planned long before the tragic events over this weekend. >> you can't cancel it? >> these rnc members are here from all over the country for this meeting this week. so to cancel it would be to
cancel on these folks who have made a great effort to be here in washington, and, ed, i can assure you that right behind me at the capitol you have lots of congress people who are burnings midnight oil, during their work and not necessarily tuning into the president's speech tonight because they have a lot to do. >> i mean the point here is probably not the worst thing that boehner's done this week or even today. what we need to see is action about guns. we fleed to see action about rhetoric. we need to see action about funding for mental health care in arizona and around this country, so on my list of things that boehner's not doing that he should be doing, canceling this benefit isn't at the top. >> all right, laura, what about the gun, "you lie" inscribed on the semiautomatic firearm. >> i'm still baiting to hear joe wilson to say, remove this from the shelves. i disapprove of this. i'm against it. i haven't heard that yet and waiting for. >> aim, will wilson speak up. >> well in fact, it was an intemperent burst at time. joe wilson apologized for it at
the time. joe wilson himself apologized for. so it seems a little bit juvenile to me to be inscribing words on this gun but at the same time i think that a lot gun control advocates they'd be unhappy if it said "to susy from mom. zwhoots an assault weapon right now that has "you lie" on it. >> i think that it's civil disobedience and you'll not be able to pry this gun from my cold dead head. it's a bit juvenile. >> this kind of stuff as juvenile particularly in a week like this. i think that it's far more serious than that. it wasn't his comment which was ircomprehensible itself. >> i don't think that he needs to be getting involved in this debate at all. >> getting involved? >> if this is a gun control debate that is something else. >> amy, those are his words inscribed on a semiautomatic
firearm. >> that he himself renounced. >> the gun industry is viewing this as a commemorative gun with his words on it, and how would he feel about that? shouldn't he be saying get those words off. >> he could say that but i don't think that that will change the views of people who are anti-gun control, who don't like this make and model of gun and that's a different issue. >> all right. finally ask, amy, sarah palin, her video, how would you classify it today? >> lengthy but i think that she had every right of course to defend herself. she's been dragged through the mud with this whole issue and now we learn that he did not listen to the radio, watch tv. >> i mean she came out on the offensive against the media playing the victim on the day that their memorial's being held. >> ed, you criticized her when she didn't say anything and now you're criticizing her because she said too much or didn't like to say. i think that you wouldn't be hired -- >> amy, you think this is
appropriate what she did today? >> i think that she has every right to defend herself. she bypassed the media. >> that's not question. the question is it appropriate, what do you think, laura? >> i think that it's appropriate for her -- >> to use the word blood libel entirely problematic. >> even alan durcho wits defending that. >> this is the problem that she has picked out which is the victimization of her. >> all right, flalaura flanders amy holmes, thanks so much. coming up the warning signs on the alleged shooter jared loughner they were there. now i want to know if this terrible tragedy could had been prevented. if the country decided to take mental illness as seriously as we do child abuse. there is a comparison and there's a difference when it comes to passing information. that's next on "the ed show." hey tough guy, that cold needs alka seltzer plus! it has the cold-fighting power of an effervescent packed in a liquid-gel for all over relief! hiyah!
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and in the "playbook" tonight, we need to spend more time on this subject. i believe the tragedy in arizona could had been prevented, but there was a real failure to connect the dots because of laws on the books. so many people knew, jared loughner the 22-year-old suspected gunman was troubled, very troubled, but he wasn't on the radar screen for officials to share information? now in october, pima county college officials suspended loughner after multiple incidents of disturbing behavior. two campus police officers went to loughner's home where he lived with his parents to tell him the campus police spoke with loughner and his parents to tell him that you know you've got to get a mental evaluation but come back and told his parents that he would not be allowed back
unless he got a mental health clearance. but he never got the that he needed. the information about him was never passed onto local police and other authorities who could have helped if they had known. that's because privacy laws and rules make it very hard to share medical information. people with serious debilitating mental illnesses are victims of their illness. but there should be reporting, required -- to acquired authorities people who have serious concerns that community college clearly did. if it had happened could loughner had gotten help and could this killing had been prevented? joining me now is dr. jeff gardere, practicing psychologist, msnbc contributor, and contributor to healthguru.com. dr. gardere, if -- do you think in your professional opinion, had this shooter been treated for schizophrenia that the
behavior would had been different? you can't cure schizogreenia but treat it, can you not. >> you can treat it, manage, you can monitor it and that's what should have happened here and of course we want privacy laws to be on the side of the patient but we have to remember, ed, some of these patients have serious mental illness, may be a danger to themselves, may be a danger to others, and therefore that supersedes the privacy issues because then the hospitals or the court systems need to be petitioned so that these people can get help so that they can get better. >> but the problem with that in this case is the -- the learning institution,s college, washed its hands of it. said it's not -- we can't do anymore. when they could have passed on some information to law enforcement but laws prevented that and while we're all going after gun control, how about the mental illness angle of helping people? he could have maybe not slipped through the cracks had their been a case worker, via law
enforcement from the information from the school to help this man, what about that? >> well the problem is that large organizations, institutions they turn this over to the parents, and they basically tell the parents, listen, your kid has a real mental health issue, as you pointed out he can't come back until he gets a mental health clearance. we've dropped this into the hands of the parents. let the parents figure out if they want to petition the courts the hospitals to have this person involuntary committed. when you look at these privacy issues, yes, it is to protect the patient but if the person now becomes a danger to themselves and again a danger to the community, then i do believe it supersedes the privacy laws and it's not just about the legal thing it's the humane thing do for the patient. >> it is. dr. gardere, i think that this is really something that congress needs to look at. there are education professionals that are in that facility, that made the professional determination, this
guy can't come back here unless he gets a mental checkup. complaints from the classroom, staff, fellow friends, all of that. and the information can still be not made i believe. >> that's right. >> there are professionals that can handle this that are trained to this handle that would not injure the family or kids' reputation. >> i agree with you, they didn't have to -- >> they wouldn't have to out him if you will as far as his mental health issues, instead of making him a public enemy, a nuisance, a danger to our school, they could have reached out to the parents and said we're going to offer you social workers if you're having a problem getting him treatment. >> exactly. >> who can help because we care about him. >> and i think that it needs to be pointed out tonight in child neglect cases mandated by law, schools and also hospitals are mandated by law to report if there is any child abuse or any child that is in danger but when it comes to mental illness and
it comes to the safety of the public there is not the same standard. i think that need says to be addressed by the congress. >> absolutely. they could have acted behind the scenes to help him more. >> you bet. dr. gardere, good to have you here tonight. >> thank you. coming up, the eyes of the nation will be on president obama tonight. he'll be speaking at the memorial service in arizona, trying to help heal our country. we'll preview it, coming up. ♪ ♪ work, work all week long ♪ punching that clock from dusk till dawn ♪
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let us let our own children know that we will stand against the forces of fear when there is talk of hatred, let us stand up and take against it. when there is talk of violence, let us stand up and talk against it. that was president bill clinton in 1995, following the oklahoma city bombing. in that speech he helped unite the country and let the healing process begin. in less than two hours, president obama will try to bring the country together. the president will deliver a speech at the memorial service in tucson, arizona. we're told at this hour that he is expected to visit the university of memorial hospital -- the university hospital, and visit with gabby giffords, the congresswoman, who is fighting for her life, and her husband. and also the other victims as well. for more, let's bring in joan walsh, editor in chief, salon.com. the president going to speak tonight, joan. this is a tall order, obviously, the way that the country's
feeling right now. what do you think he's going to say, and how is he going to say it? >> you know, ed, i expect him to say that what happened on saturday was tragic, but most important thing to remember is that what happened there before the tragedy is so american. that people were coming together with their congresswoman to bring her their concern and their thoughts. we had at least two republicans murdered at that event, judge roll as well as a woman named phillis schneck who was a republican who loved gabby giffords so this is the best of america, ed. that's the best of america and i think that he'll point. i think that he'll point to daniel hernandez, the wonderful hero who saved gabby giffords life, who happens to be a gay latino. i think that he'll reminds that you we're stronger when we pull together and what happened there was really a terrible aberration and recall us to our common
bonds. >> it seems like every president has to go through a moment like this. >> yeah, there's a -- you know there's tragedy in our country. the challenger tragedy was not about violence but was shocking and horrible and ronald reagan pulled us together. sadly, president clinton had to deal with a similar situation. not identical. we still don't know if jared loughner was really influenced by the climate of hate and fear in our country. it may had been unrelated. except for one thing that we do know, ed. it was a political act because he tried to murder a congresswoman and he murdered a federal judge. it was an assassination attempt and when you bring your craziness and your grievances into that realm and make it dangerous to be a public servant, that diminishes america and i think that's what the president's going to talk about tonight. >> joan walsh, thank you for joining us tonight. i appreciate it. >> sure. >> that's "the ed show." i'm ed schultz. you can watch the